Evaluating the effectiveness of British sports physiology consultants.
University of Wales Institute, Cardiff.
MetadataShow full item record
As sports science support in the UK continues to grow, and sports physiologists move towards a professional status it is important that they accept and address the new levels of accountability that come with this professional position. Within this new professional era the responsibilities of the sports physiology consultant have increased considerably, and the need to respond to this accountability is essential. Evaluation, therefore, is of primary importance, providing the consultants with the opportunity to recognise effective practice. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of sports physiology consultants providing services to elite British athletes and in turn identify the characteristics and activities pertinent to effective practice. Evaluation was undertaken through semi structured interviews with elite British athletes (n=10), who had received consistent physiological support from a sports physiology consultant (n=8). The interview focused on the athletes' experiences of sports physiology support. It allowed recognition of effective and ineffective practices, relating to characteristics of the physiologist and activities carried out by the consultant. Inductive content analysis was used to analyse the interview data. The focus of analysis revolved around three core areas established within the semi-structured interview guide: desirable characteristics of the sports physiologist, what activities the sports physiologist did with the athletes and how they were carried out, and evaluative comments regarding the sports physiologist and the services they provided that did not fit into the previous categories. The analysis involved dividing the interview text into meaning units, which is a segment of text that contains one theme or idea. By comparing and contrasting each meaning unit with another, similar units are grouped together to form 'higher order themes'. The inductive process builds upon itself and the same comparing and contrasting identifies new higher order themes. The final analysis involves defining a general dimension by grouping together similar higher order themes. The analysis revealed findings relating to the effective characteristics of sports physiology consultants, and seven key attributes were deemed important. Findings also related to the activities provided by sports physiologists and suggested that certain activities and related issues were pertinent to effective practice. Evaluative comments indicated that all the athletes interviewed perceived sports physiology support positively. The findings demonstrated that effective practice is dependant on consultants possessing desirable characteristics and providing appropriate activities and services, and furthermore that effective practice elicits positive perceptions of sports physiology support. The study has also provided a basis upon which to build a greater body of literature conceming evaluation of applied sports physiology services, and perhaps a starting point for the development of a measurement tool for such evaluation.
MSc Coaching Science Thesis
- Masters Degrees (Sport) 
Showing items related by title, author, subject and abstract.
Step, Gavin Paul (University of Wales Institute, Cardiff, 2005)The purpose of this study was to explore perceptions of sport science support from a coach's perspective. Individual interviews were conducted with six Welsh Coaches in order to assess the effectiveness of sport science ...
Cropley, Brendan (University of WalesCardiff School of Sport, 2010)The emergence of professional status within the field of Applied Sport Psychology (ASP)has resulted in a greater need for ASP consultants to consider the effectiveness of their practice and thus attempt to meet the increased ...
Influence of Age and Maturation on Fitness Development, Trainability And Competitive Performance In Youth Silat Shapie, Mohamad Nizam Mohamed (Cardiff Metropolitan University, 2011)Silat Olahraga, also known as Silat, is a popular combat sport, but little is known about the sports in terms of sport science of physiological demands and characteristics. This is particularly true for the adolescent ...